braeee wrote:My dream goal is to teach in Florence (a long with everyone else in the world). I understand it is competitive, especially for an American. However, I am trying to choose the course that will give me the best shot at achieving my goal.
You say you have done "extensive research" but your post suggests that you've missed the most important point which is that as a non-EU citizen you will struggle to find legal work anywhere in Western Europe. This is because employers in the EU cannot just hire a non-EU citizen. They first have to prove that there were no suitably qualified EU citizens who could do the job, which is not a very likely proposition.
As a non-EU citizen you would enter Italy (or Spain) on a Schengen visa. This is essentially a tourist visa that gives you 90 days in the Schengen zone (http://ec.europa.eu/dgs/home-affairs/what-we-do/policies/borders-and-visas/schengen/index_en.htm
). Taking your CELTA or Trinity CertTESOL in-country means using up 30 of those precious days. Failure to convert your visa into a valid work visa through an employer within those 90 days, which as stated above is unlikely, means having to leave not just the country you entered but the entire zone for a further 90 days. Border runs to restart the clock are no longer possible.
There are a couple of programmes (see below) which, if you meet the criteria, would allow you to work legally in parts of Europe for a fixed amount of time. Other than that you might want to look into getting a student visa, although that would, unsurprisingly, require you to study something through a recognised provider for 20hrs a week. Contact the relevant embassies for more information.
PROGRAMMES FOR NORTH AMERICANS
If you are American or Canadian there are a few programmes that, if you meet the criteria, will enable you to legally work in Western Europe for a fixed amount of time. NB: As an EU citizen I am merely aware of these programmes – I cannot vouch for any of them so please DO YOUR OWN RESEARCH before applying.North American Language and Culture Assistants Programme:
A very popular programme offering teaching assistant placements in Spain. Note that early application is essential. However, applications for the 2013/14 academic year have already closed. See: http://www.educacion.gob.es/eeuu/convocatorias-programas/convocatorias-eeuu/auxiliares-conversacion-eeuu.htmlBilingual English Development and Assessment (BEDA):
A private organisation that places language assistants in Catholic schools primarily in Madrid, Spain, but also in the a few other places in Spain. Note that this programme is also open to Australians and New Zealanders. Applications for the 2013/14 academic year closed on 31 January 2013. See: http://www.ecmadrid.org/beda/Auxiliares%20de%20conversacion/iwant.htmlUnión de Cooperativas de Enseñanza de Trabajo Asociado de Madrid (UCETAM):
Programme placing US citizens as English Teaching Assistants in schools in Madrid. Their website is in Spanish (so language proficiency is definitely required) and is fairly light on information but there are at least contact details. See: http://www.ucetam.org/Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE):
This programme offers teaching assistant placements in Spain. The application period for the 2013/14 academic year has already closed. See: http://www.ciee.org/teach/spain/Centre International d'Études Pédagogiques (CIEP):
This programme offers teaching assistant placements in France and is open to citizens of the US, Canada, South Africa, Australia and NZ among others. You MUST be aged 20-30 and attending university at the time of application and have a reasonable knowledge of French (B1 level). Recruitment is open from mid-October to early January/late February. See: http://www.ciep.fr/en/assistantetr/index.phpFulbright:
Programme placing US citizens as English Teaching Assistants all over Europe. Language proficiency may be required. See: http://us.fulbrightonline.org/eta-program-charts
(click on Europe to see placements, grants and language requirements).